Ajax finally masters FC Twente

Ajax finally masters FC Twente

Ajax finally got the better of FC Twente.  After a 3-3 tie in Enschede and elimination from the cup tournament earlier this season, Erik ten Hag’s team finally posted a narrow 2-1 win.  A penalty kick by Lasse Schöne secured the 3 points.

Under the watchful eye of Davy Klaassen, among others, Ajax started off strong against FC Twente.  In the first half hour, the Amsterdam team, which included Matthijs de Ligt after his suspension, had suspended coach Gert-Jan Verbeek’s team enclosed in an iron grip.  One fluid combination after another took place on the grass field.

Only the best attack succeeds
Unfortunately, only the most beautiful attack earned a goal.  This occurred in the 3rd minute: Justin Kluivert set up the attack, passed to David Neres, who then found Van de Beek.  The midfielder sent the ball up, enabling Kluivert, who had come up, to pass Drommel: 1-0.  This was his 6th Eredivisie goal.

Van de Beek lacks precision
Two minutes later, Van de Beek had the 2-0 at his feet.  A good shot by Matthijs van de Ligt came to his feet, but he shot too high.  One minute later, Ziyech prepared the ball perfectly for Van de Beek, but this time, he found Joël Drommel in his way.

Caution required
As Ajax was continuously in the lead, the team remained on the lookout for FC Twente to transition.  Especially in the last fifteen minutes of the first half, Ajax played with fire somewhat, just as they had in the 2 previous meetings against the ‘Tukkers’ this season (3-3 and elimination from the cup).

Ajax hoped for the same start to the second half as for the first, but it didn’t turn out that way.  It was Twente who dominated.  In the 48th minute, Tighadouini took advantage of two – literal- slips by Frenkie de Jong.  But fortunately, that shot ended up in Onana’s hands.  And a scant 10 minutes later, the Ajax goalie disarmed a Tom Boere shot into the near corner.

Twente comes back: 1-1
Ten Hag had seen enough and brought Rasmus Kristensen in for Neres.  That meant, in practice, that Frenkie de Jong moved to midfield and Ziyech went to the flank.  In the 66th minute, Veltman went under a long shot from Drommel, Boere was able to proceed, and he set up perfectly for Tighadouini.  It was then a piece of cake for the completely uncovered midfielder to score the 1-1 goal.

Schöne makes good on penalty
Ajax needed to bring out its best in order to get back into the game.  They received a helping hand from Twente in this.  In the 71st minute, Ziyech tripped.  Referee Gözübüyük indicated the spot decisively.  From twelve feet out, Schöne put Ajax in the lead once again.

With 10 minutes on the clock, Amin Younes returned to the line-up at the Amsterdam ArenA.  It was a nail-biting phase during which Twente was very dangerous.  With Max Wöber relieving Van de Beek for the last 2 minutes, Ajax crossed the finish line in victory.